Posts Tagged With: Car trouble

Being in over my head…

It’s happened more this past year than ever in the previous twenty-one or twenty-two years…combined. At least, it feels like that.


Well, because until this past year, I guess my life was pretty safe, stable, and some might say…easy.

Ok. I said it.

I had an easy life.

Not that I was spoiled, but I was never in need of anything, or forced to do anything really scary or over my head.

Until I got married.

And moved to a big city.

Where I knew pretty much no one.

And for sure had no idea how to get around up here on my own.

All while trying to find a real job.

And then we decided to try to buy a house.

And finally ended up doing just that.

(insert mini celebration here)

But there are a lot of things that have been, and still are, overwhelming about all these exciting developments. In fact, sometimes I find myself feeling so overwhelmed that I don’t even know what’s overwhelming me…just that I’m in need of some sort of organization and solution to…well everything.

And in times like that, I make lists. Usually in my head, sometimes written down. So here goes:

1. We know pretty much nothing about fixing up a house. It’s frightening when both of us have no real opinion on a matter and yet have to make some sort of major decision anyway.

2. There’s a million and one paint colors out there, for each brand of paint. How will I ever choose which ones to buy and put on our walls?

3. We have very little furniture to fill all these new rooms.

4. We don’t have a big enough budget to buy furniture to fill all these new rooms…not even thrift store furniture. Yikes.

5. I still don’t have a REAL job.

6. Maybe my real job is being a freelancer. Maybe I should work on getting more jobs and more clients and try to really make this work…so many what ifs there.


8. How are we ever going to get packed up, loaded, and unloaded in this 110 degree heat?

9. Will I ever run again? Why am I too tired in the morning to get up to do this? Why is it too scary for a woman to run by herself at night? Stupid crime and stuff…

10. What will me not having a job mean when it comes time to start paying bills for the house?

11. What it Hubs has to start traveling more for work?

12. My kitchen is so messy. So small, and yet so messy.

13. My dining room is so messy. So totally and completely impossible to be used as a dining room right now.

14. My living room is so messy…you get the idea, right?

15. The new house is in a state of un-wallpapered walls, mostly-painted ceilings, messy floors, piles of tools and supplies, tarps, drop cloths and messes everywhere.

16. My car is still making a funny noise, and we can’t ever find time to take it anywhere to get looked at…

17. Hubs’ car is too hot to drive in this weather.

18. We REALLY don’t want to have to buy a new car right now…

19. We have nothing in our cabinets to make for dinner.


Ok, I’m done now.


Now that I’m finished organizing my overwhelmed-ness (?), I can move on to solving some stuff, right?

Or I can just sit back on the couch and wait for Hubs to come home and help me.

Or I can start wondering why he’s almost 30 minutes late getting home from work.

Oops, there I go again.

Note: Please don’t mistake this post as complaining about my life with Hubs. I’m blessed and I know it. I’m just feeling scattered and overwhelmed with all the stuff going on right now in my head. This was just my way of admitting to the world how un-put-together my life is…as I know that sometimes blogging about good stuff, conflict resolution, and happy times can make it seem like I have it all figured out…when in fact, I most certainly do not.


What about you, friends? What’s overwhelming you? What in your life is totally and completely unorganized right now? What messes are you cleaning up or trying to figure out how to hide if company suddenly comes over?


Categories: Everyday Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

How a broken radiator taught me to trust my husband more

Last week, my car overheated on the way to get the water switched over to our name at our new house. I told you guys all about it, so of course, because you are such loyal and awesome readers, that you remember ever tiny little detail about it. In case your mind is a little fuzzy on the details, or you missed it because you were vacationing somewhere fabulous and fancy, or just because the post was so awesome you want to go back and read it again, here it is.

A few days after all that took place, Hubs and I were driving around in my car because his car doesn’t have air conditioning and it’s 150-million degrees in Kansas City lately (No? Fine, but it’s hot!), it started to get a little hot again.

Why do we get so upset that our cars can’t keep cool in this heat. WE can’t keep cool in this heat!

When we got home, he checked the water levels and they were low again. That means I had a leak. Uh oh.

But he saw a tiny little line that looked like a crack on the radiator and so set to work finding out where to buy one and thinking about getting it replaced right away.

He tracked down the best deal for the fix: buying the radiator from an auto-store and putting it in himself, and set out to get started.

I balked.

Just a little, but it was enough to make him mad.

I wanted to KNOW that spending the money (unbudgeted, mind you, though we do have an emergency fund) ¬†would fix the problem. We just bought a house. I don’t have a full time job. This is not the time to spend money we don’t have to. I needed some assurance that this money and effort (it seemed like an awful lot of work to put that radiator in ourselves!) would not all be for nothing when we found my car was still loosing water somewhere…

Hubs was angry.

He thought this meant I was arguing with him, doubting his wisdom on fixing the car, blocking him from trying to take action to fix a problem for me, for us, as soon as possible.

I didn’t mean to convey all that with my questions, but I guess I did. He didn’t mean to blow up and get so huffy so fast when all I was looking for was some additional reassurance, but it certainly resulted in a negative reaction from both of us as he stormed down the steps to go find some “proof” this “crack” was the culprit.

Oops. Good thing we forgive easily.

So after a few minutes of huffing and sulking and being salty with each other, we set to work. He filled up the radiator with water and squeezed some big hose for a few minutes until, yup, little water bubbles started foaming out of the tiny little line that did, in fact, turn out to be fairly significant crack in a super important part of the car, especially when it’s 100+ degrees outside.

So we bought the radiator and parked under a shade tree in our apartment’s parking lot. And then we worked all evening, about three hours or so, until we got it changed.

I’m allowed to honestly say “we” there because I helped, really.

I promise I did. You can ask him.

I held the light. I struggled to hold back hoses and stuff that were in his way. I even helped put in some little pin thing that holds the hose in place. I found and picked up stuff he dropped down into the mess of parts and stuff that make up the tangled, confusing mess under the hood of the car whenever the little pins were so small and springy that he could barely hold onto them while having to fight to work in the tiny space between the fan and the radiator to get things all hooked back up properly. I took out and put back in the air filter so he’d have about an inch more room to work….you get the idea.

And pretty soon this happened:

Hubs putting in the last bolt. We’re finally done!

We had successfully taken this out:


And put this in its place:

So shiny and new!

Time to relax and celebrate!

But it was after 9:00 and we hadn’t had dinner, we both needed a shower and we were hot and tired.

So we scrubbed the oil and grease and dirt and stuff off our hands and arms, warmed up some leftovers, and collapsed on our couch for the rest of the night. And by rest of the night, I mean about an hour before we dragged ourselves off to bed.

But in this crazy mess of an afternoon that was supposed to be relaxing (we’d scheduled some QT involving yummy food and FRIENDS on the couch that night), I learned an awesome lesson.

This man that I married never ceases to amaze me or give me more and more reasons to love and respect him. He knows so much about so much and is willing to work hard to do whatever he needs to provide for us. He’s smart and strong and sensible. He’s loving and patient and kind to me when I don’t deserve it. ¬†He’s more than I ever imagined he could be when we danced that first dance together in the gym…when I was 15.

I’m nearly 23 now and you know what? I’m more than I ever imagined I could be, too. Funny how life does that to us, huh?

And I’m grateful to love a man I can trust with my heart, my life, my future babies…and my car.

So very thankful for these hands. And this man.

Categories: Lessons | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

What I learned from my Jimmy, who got too hot today.

Today I had to drive all the way down to Blue Springs to get the water switched to our name for the new house. Exciting, and also super frustrating since it takes all of five minutes for them to do it, and I had to drive an hour and 20 minutes round trip to do it.


But the real issue today was the heat. Yes, it was hot outside. But it was also hot under the hood of my Jimmy. Really hot to be exact.

As in, the temperature gauge was hitting the red line and screaming “Red Line!!” ¬†at me and I saw steam coming out from under my hood.

Ok, the gauge wasn’t screaming out loud, but I swear I heard that in my brain, so I’m sticking to that story.

Good thing I was being a half-way responsible driver and paying attention to such things, right? Well, by paying attention to such things, I mean immediately turning off the A/C and pulling over as soon as I got to a half-way close parking lot to where I was going. Not responsible as in I actually knew what to do when I saw the steam.

I didn’t know what to do at all.

So I freaked out a little bit.


Of course.

But only on the inside, I promise.

On the inside, I could feel myself shaking a little bit as the adrenaline sunk in of almost having to pull over on I70 when it was 90+ degrees outside.

Outside, I was cool as a cucumber as I pulled in the lot, parked, and shut off the engine immediately, grabbing my belongings and hopping out of the car as I started to dial my phone for help.

I wanted to call Hubs, but he was at work and doesn’t always answer right away since he’s often in a meeting or helping someone else on the computer and away from his phone.

So I wanted to call my dad but he was at work and doesn’t always answer right away since he’s a farmer and often has his hands full with cattle or corn or something.


So I took a chance and dialed my dad. I knew he was done with harvest and had been working around the shop yesterday so I bargained that he might be able to answer, and he did! It went like this.

“Hi, I have a problem.”


“My car overheated. I’m in Blue Springs and there’s smoke or steam coming out from under the hood.”

“Ok, where are you?”

“Blue Springs!”

“No, are you off the road?”

“Yes, I’m in a parking lot.”


“I think it’s steam coming out of the hood, but I don’t know what to do. Pour water on it, open it, what?”

I think the conversation then calmed down some as I came to understand that my car wasn’t going to explode in a steamy fire or something. Ok. I’m not a mechanic, but I’m pretty sure I knew it wouldn’t do that. But it didn’t hurt to hear it from someone who REALLY knew it, you know what I mean?

I also called Hubs at work, and he answered right away, too! Hallelujah! And he agreed that we should get it checked before I tried to drive home. So I called AAA. (Thanks, mom and dad for paying for that!) and went on about the five minutes worth of business I had to do in City Hall. Then I set out to waiting for the tow truck guy to get there.

Spoiler alert: He was late.

In the meantime, I decided my phone was about to die and that would make this all that much more overwhelming and awful so I trotted back over the building I’d parked my steamy car behind and made my way to the first office I saw inside with someone in it. I knocked and a nice, older man answered. While I explained my situation and that my phone was dead, he offered me to use their phone. I said I’d actually really like to charge mine if he didn’t mind.

He didn’t mind.

So I plopped myself down in a chair and pulled out Wyatt’s charger I’d been using in the car and waited silently and awkwardly for about 10 minutes for my phone to fill up a little more on battery. Then I thanked the nice man and headed back outside to find some shade and keep waiting for the tow truck.

When he finally got there, he opened the hood and said this.

“You’re not low on water, at least not much. I can add some, but I’m not sure what that will do. There’s got to be something else wrong with it. You want me to tow it?”

No, sir, I don’t want you to tow it. I want you to tell me what’s wrong with it.

But I realize that isn’t really his job.

So I took his suggestion to drive to a little shop a few blocks away and have them look at it. On the very short trip there, Jimmy got super duper hot again. He was steamy and smelled awful. I felt awful. I was steaming, er, sweating, so I probably smelled awful, too.

The people at Fleming Auto Center were very busy. Dangit. But also very nice after I explained to the nice man at the counter that I could wait for them to work me in this afternoon, but I’m not sure what to do as I think (because my dad told me so) that I just need water in the radiator even though the tow truck guy who recommended I come here said I didn’t need any.

So he went out and looked for me. And instead of just looking at the little plastic reserve tank, which had plenty of water in in, he opened the radiator. Thank you! And said, “Wow, youare¬†bone dry.”

So he added a gallon and a half of plain ol’ water, and my temperature gauge stopped screaming “Red Line!” “Red Line!” at me every time I nervously glanced over at it. Woo hoo!

And the nice man who carried 2 jugs of water out to my hot car on that hot afternoon didn’t charge me anything at all. He did say, “Keep an eye on it, now, and pull over to let it cool off if it gets much over 210.”

I didn’t tell him I was going to watch it like a hawk the entire way home and call my husband to come get me because I was tired of dealing with this on my own if it so much as climbed a line or two closer to that 210 halfway point to the red, screaming line.

I did thank him, and assure him they would be the first place we’d visit with car trouble once we move down to Blue Springs. And then I got the heck on the road home.

What did I learn?

1. It’s hot.

2. I should have worn my hair up today.

3. ALWAYS keep spare hair ties stashed everywhere. My purse, the cup holder in the car, the pocket of my shorts, the glove box, my wrist, Wyatt’s wrist, wyatt’s shorts’ pockets, the wrists and pockets of random strangers…what?

4. Trust my instincts. If something feels off. Pull over even if you’re almost there. If I’d waited an extra block to turn in, steam might have literally come billowing out from under my hood, drawing major attention and worse, hurting my engine.

5. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Yes, I won’t become fast friends with every strange man I come in contact with, but today, I didn’t have the option to be overly cautious, shy, or embarrassed to speak up.¬†Both nice strangers today didn’t have to help me, but I needed them to step up and do the right thing, which they did, and I’m so thankful they weren’t creepy or scary or rude to me.

6. Jimmy’s getting old. Put “buy a new car” on the top of our next major to-do list.

7. I can handle stuff like this. I made it all the way down to Blue Springs on I70, which I hate, and dealt with all this crazy, quite calmly, for the most part on my own. Then I made it all the way back home on I70, which I hate, keeping one eye locked on my temperature gauge the whole time, dealing with lunch hour traffic. I didn’t need someone to come save me because I was able to keep it together and just do what I needed to do. Maybe I’m growing up after all.

I mean, a girl can’t rely on her dad, husband, and AAA for everything, forever, right?

But I’m definitely thankful I can call them when I need them.

Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Warrior Weekend

This weekend was a big one. I’d say it was a warrior-worthy mess of a weekend.

For starters, Wyatt and I had a huge fight on Friday night. It was the most angry and upset I’ve been since we’ve been married. I don’t need to go into all the details, but we were able to apologize, and forgive each other. And we moved on.

It’s not easy to let something go that quickly when it seems like such a huge deal, but the fact of the matter is that no matter what, we’re going to stay committed to this marriage and to each other. We know that we both try to do what’s best for both of us and just sometimes screw up. Sometimes we screw up bigger than other times…

But it always will work out the same way. Forgiveness.

Then, Saturday morning, we had the Warrior Dash!


This is after we finished. So we were tired, muddy, wet, and happy.

Happy and muddy…look at my poor ring! I probably should have taken it off but didn’t think about it until later, and I was SUPER careful in the mud so as not to lose it. (I kept my hand clenched shut the entire time!)

There was a huge line of people waiting to get hosed off afterwards.

Warrior Wash. They’re so clever.

See the people waiting in line?

Then they just spray you down with super cold water. It’s pretty awesome.

All in all, it was a great time.

Wyatt was super tired though, being that he hasn’t really ran more than a mile since September…but he made it!

Yup, that’s sweat. It was pretty hot, but thankfully we ran in the morning before it got too crazy out there.

I had a great time. It was my first time doing an event with Hubs, so that was super fun. He made me jump over the fire. I made him keep running. We’re a good team.

That shirt was white when I started. (I knew it’d get filthy, it wasn’t a shirt I wear a lot now that I’m out of college and it was already stained…)

But the main challenge this weekend came after the Warrior Dash.

We set out to leave for the Sporting KC game Saturday night and Hubs’ car made a real funny noise, and then wouldn’t shift. It was really, really off.

Uh oh.

And then when we went back, switched to my car so we wouldn’t miss the game, and stopped for gas, the service engine light came on in my car.

Suddenly, we were faced by the possibility of having to spend major money on repairs of both of our vehicles. Or just replace them, being that neither of them are worth a costly repair really, especially Hubs’ 1990 Honda Accord. We love that car, but let’s face it. It’s old. As in 279,000 miles-old.

I was overwhelmed. Hubs was angry and frustrated. We spent Sunday afternoon trying to figure out what was wrong with both of them. It was pretty sad.

Our down-payment fund looked like it was in danger.

But we made it. Because we’re warriors, remember?

First we went to the auto-place to run the code on my car. Turns out, it’s something we can fix ourselves for not a ton of money. An inconvenience, sure, but not unbearable.

But the best part is about the Honda. Hubs is a great problem-solver and he was able to find the issue using basic trial and error and the internet. Then we took it to the dealer’s service center to confirm what we thought was wrong. The part was going to be $600 to fix it! Yikes. The car’s not even worth that!

So he set to work finding a salvage yard and we went there to find the part today. He spent an hour trying to find it, but finally got it. Then we headed home, he got it installed, and guess what?

We’re back in business!

I’m proud of Hubs for his off-the-cuff, learn-as-he-goes mechanic skills. I’m proud of both of us for not freaking out and making a rash decision while we were feeling overwhelmed and angry. We were able to find the best solution and save a lot of money, time, effort, and frustration.

I’d say that’s warrior-worthy of a celebration.

Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Three firsts, two lessons, and one run-on sentence.

In our first year of marriage, we’re having all sorts of “firsts.” Our first vacation together, our first Thanksgiving, our first Christmas, our first bottle of champagne…you get the idea.

So, tonight, we celebrated another, or rather several:

1. Our first taxes!

We’ve been prepping and getting ready, collecting W-2’s like crazy. (We had 6 this year! Good grief!)

And after our appointment tonight at H&R Block, we’re now filed and ready to go.

I’m quite proud of us for having all our stuff together, going through records (having records!), and getting this done early. And we’ll get a pretty nice refund so we’re already planning what to do with that. Obviously, we’ll save what we can, but I want to put some aside to spend on our trip this summer.

Because, yes, we’re taking a trip this summer!

I also learned a lot. Lesson 1: Ask questions. It’s harder to learn if people don’t know what you want to know and what you’re trying to figure out.

Eventually, we want to do our own taxes, but this first year, we wanted to have someone teach us what to do, what to look for, how to double check everything, what to save throughout the year…you know. All that big stuff for big people. Or rather grown up people. Big people don’t necessarily have to be grown ups, I guess.

2. The first time Hubs has stopped and taken the resolution side of the argument before me.

I was being grumpy for some stupid reason. Hubs called me on it. I calmed down. A few minutes later, he offered some advice for me to follow during our tax meeting. I took offense, because I hadn’t really resolved my earlier grumpiness, and I said something snappy that I shouldn’t have. It was out of line. And he reacted strongly at first. But when I called him on his reaction, he stepped back from the conversation and went above our petty argument to reflect on how we could resolve this, move on, and avoid it in the future. He actually resolved the whole thing on his own while I sat there trying to figure out what was happening. I was proud of him, proud of us.

3. The first time I “rescued” Hubs.

He locked his keys in his car at work and caught a ride to a store kind of close to our house (not that close) and I went to pick him up. Of course, I was in the shower when he called (the first five times) and I didn’t answer until the sixth call so he was a bit angry and annoyed when he was telling me the story and where he was and how I needed to come get him how I needed this to be a lesson that I take my phone into the bathroom with me when I take a shower (lesson learned!) and I was rushing around to get dressed and get out the door and when I made it there, I was also angry and annoyed because I’d hit every red light on the way except three. Seriously. And yes, that was a serious run-on sentence, but you guys don’t mind, right?

I thought so. Thanks.

Anyway, those our our three new firsts.

What about you? What firsts are the most fun? How long into a relationship are there firsts? Do they ever stop seeming special?

Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Stealing things is a lot different than stealing joy

Friday night was not a great night here in newlywedville. (Yes, I know that’s not a real word, or a real place.)

Just to give you some background information, neither Hubs nor I owned a credit card before we got married. In fact, we had a slight panic before the wedding when we were trying to make honeymoon arrangements and needed one to reserve hotel rooms. We got that all worked out and use it pretty much only to buy gas or large grocery shopping trips just for the cash back. We try to be responsible and pay it off every month and until Friday, we had no problems.

But, Friday night while checking the balance to pay it off, Hubs discovered a $900+ charge to an online golf warehouse. While he would like a new set of golf clubs, these certainly weren’t purchased by us. So we had to deal with that. Luckily, we won’t be responsible for the payment, but it’s still a hassle.

Then, Saturday morning when he was getting ready to leave, Wyatt discovered his car had been broken into. They threw a rock or something through the window and stole the radio and his MP3 player. Keep in mind, people, that his car is a ’90 Honda accord, and his radio and Zune were at least 5-7 years old, maybe even 10, I’d guess.

So we had a pretty eventful weekend, all things considered. It’s a weird feeling to be stolen from. Not only do you feel angry and frustrated at everything you have to deal with, there’s also a sense of violation that comes into play. Someone was in your space, touching and taking your things. It makes my skin crawl a bit. And then there’s the loss. We’re not rich, we don’t have a lot, and while a radio and music player aren’t necessities, we’ll certainly feel their absence. We’ve both reached for the radio knob while driving several times. And we’ll have to pay to get the window fixed.

We also had to pay for the plastic to cover the broken window. (Yes, we’re reppin’ the plastic taped to the window. I hesitate to say “white trash” for fear of offending anyone in a similar situation, but let’s just say we felt a bit conspicuous driving around in nicer neighborhoods this weekend.)

So why can I honestly say we still had a good weekend, despite all this craziness?

Well, because we did our best to deal with each situation and we moved on. Yes, Hubs was REALLY mad when he discovered the car window broken and everything gone, and yes, I could see the anger and annoyance and even hurt in his eyes when he was on the phone with the credit card company. But when we sat down together at the end of the day on Saturday night after dealing with all this, we were both relaxed and smiling.

Of course, that could have also had something to do with our decorated tree and the couple of beers we’d enjoyed. Oh, and the holiday cheer that came from watching Rudolph on TV. Can you believe Hubs had NEVER seen it before? NEVER? I was amazed and amused as he got a kick out of the name “Yukon Cornelius.”

The beginning of the good part of this weekend.

Yes, I know you’ve seen that post if you follow me on Twitter. Want to follow me on twitter? Sounds like a good plan to me! Go here.

So, what did I learn this weekend? Lots of things.

1. Locking your doors is important, but not ALWAYS helpful. If someone wants in, they’ll get in. Also, I’m thankful my car has an alarm system that tends to go off at random times that I’m usually annoyed by. At least there’s a chance it would go off in a case like this…

2. I’m thankful for our neighbors down below who happened to see a guy lurking around cars checking the doors a night last week while he was standing on his deck smoking. No, it didn’t stop us from having to deal with this, but it might have stopped us from having to deal with it on a weekday when Hubs would have needed to go to work, and it might have stopped us from having to deal with it twice. Who knows? Either way, I’m glad to know he’s watching out when he’s out there.

3. I so admire that Wyatt tries so hard to control his emotions around me and that he’s successful at these attempts. I’ve seen him get very angry before (never at me), but I was a bit intimidated to see that fire in his eyes anytime it would happen. Every year we’ve been together, I’ve seen him grow and mature in the way he deals with things that anger and upset him. Yes, he was justified in being upset, but I’m so thankful to never have to be concerned about my safety or the probability of him busting his fist through a wall and I respect and admire the way he works through problems instead of blowing up.

4. No matter how safe our apartment feels or how much I like the area of the city we live in, it’s still the city and there are still reasons to not roll my eyes when my mom says to be careful up here. I should never be casual about my surroundings.

5. Being married to a man I trust is so comforting. He’s not only my best friend and our family’s provider, he’s also my protector. And falling asleep in his arms is exactly where I want to end every night. Reason # 163 why Husband roommates are the best.

6. Christmas festivities really do make my heart happy. And like the expression says, “Happy wife, happy life.” When I was excited about decorating our tree, Hubs was grinning and playing along as well. ¬†It’s our first Christmas as husband and wife, and our tree is beautiful. So beautiful, in fact, that I admit to shedding a few tears. But when I had tears in my eyes on Saturday night, it was for a totally different reason than the tears that fell Friday night.

What’s that? You want to see our tree all dolled up?

You’ll have to check back and see it tomorrow!


Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Lesson #10: ‘Tis better to plan ahead than to be pulled over with expired tags, and an expired license

So, yesterday morning when we woke up, neither Hubs nor I were legal to drive. Oops.

See, his birthday was Saturday, and his license expired that day. And of course, we’ve been too busy being newlyweds and getting new jobs and settling into our apartment, and of course, doing laundry, to pay attention to that sort of thing. So we tried to take care of it that day. But, of course…the bureau isn’t open on Saturdays, or Sundays. Uh Oh.

So on Monday morning, he set out to go get a new license, but he didn’t have all the documents he needed. (Yes, we should have checked that ahead of time, but we didn’t.) Thus, another day of living life on the edge passed.

As for me, my parents technically still own my car. ¬†Tthus, they needed to file the paperwork to get my license plate renewed before December. I went and got it inspected up here, and took the paperwork to them one weekend in November when we were visiting home. Then, Mom went and got the new stickers for the plate, but there was the problem of getting them up here to me. Since we won’t be seeing them for another couple weeks, we didn’t want to wait that long. It is illegal, after all, to drive with expired tags. And I’m not one for doing illegal things, as anyone who knows me would know.

But…since we don’t trust our mail right now (My late Uncle Harold would understand…) because we’ve had some things get lost both coming and going…she decided to mail it overnight to my aunt who lives close to us and I’d just go pick it up.

So that’s what we did, and I remembered to send Hubs’s birth certificate with him to work and sent periodic emails to remind him not to forget about it.

And despite our “reckless living,” neither of us had any actual trouble with the law over all this. We got it taken care of and we moved on. But, it could have happened. Moral of the story? Be more on top of things like this. Although it would have made a better story for you if something “bad” always happened when we screw up this way, it’s much easier to do these things ahead of time. ¬†(Goodness, I sound like my mother when I say that.)

Categories: Lessons | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Lesson # 8: How to fix a tire (So much for a restful Sunday)

After so many weekends away from home, Wyatt and I planned to spend this one just relaxing. We had waffles for breakfast and were going to just chill out all afternoon. It sounded so nice. And in theory, it was.

Our yummy waffles for breakfast. We each had one regular one and we split a chocolate chip one for "dessert."

In reality though, at about 4:00, we decided to go to the car wash to wash Wyatt’s car. At this point, we remembered that, despite just buying four brand new tires two weeks earlier, we’d had a flat tire yesterday morning. We had aired it up and made it all the way home to KC, thinking we’d check it again if it got low again.

And it was all the way flat when we went downstairs to leave for the car wash.


So Wyatt got to work to get it off the car. His jack makes this job a lot easier, and I am a firm believer that everyone should have a jack like that. And then he carried¬†the¬†up the stairs to look at it. (I rolled it up the first flight “to help” but he got impatient of that so he just carried it the rest of the way.) And when we discovered the culprit, a screw, we headed to Walmart to get a tire repair kit. And then home again to begin the process.

Our bathroom, all prepped for "tire repair."

At this point, my job was to stay out of the way and open up the glue and hand Wyatt tools. (Yea, yea, I know, he didn’t really need me, but it made me feel better than to just to sit on the couch and watch TV, right? What else is a wife supposed to do at a time like this?)

The root of the problem.

How frustrating. A 2 inch screw. Shoved all the way into our BRAND NEW TIRE. Grrr…. But we were now ready to begin the actual repair work.

The contents of the “deluxe” tire repair kit from Wal-mart.

¬†It didn’t take very long for him to get the plug in there. And then we were off, back down the three flights of stairs to air up the tire and see if it was leaking.¬†Checking to see if the plug leaked. Using soapy water is the way to do this. (It is also the way to check for a leak in your gas line, in case you didn’t know that.)

It didn’t leak, so he put the tire back on and we headed out to find a car wash. Which we didn’t find. So we just cleaned the inside and out with our car cleaning kit (windows and dashboard wipes) and called it a day.¬†


And now we’re having margaritas and watching pumpkin carving shows on TV.

So it isn’t a complete loss.


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Not Lost

Today I had to make my way to Liberty to get an estimate for our car repair after our fender bender a few weeks ago (Yes, we are dragging our feet a little in this process).

As usual, I was nervous that I would get totally lost, stranded, and well, have to call my husband at work to come rescue me.

(Which wouldn’t be SOO bad, except that I’d NEVER hear the end of it.)

And of course, that would be a worst case scenario. Most likely, I’d just be really, really late to whatever I was trying to get to.

You’d think that after close to 3 months, I’d be getting better at this driving in the city stuff, but really, as I drive around, I still don’t get the feeling that I really live here. I mean, our apartment feels like home, and I’m getting better at finding my way around the strangely unfamiliar set up of our local Wal-Mart (you’d think they would be more similar from town to town…), but overall, I think I still feel like I’m visiting, or just pretending to live here.

Is that weird?

But today I made it there and back, no problems. At all. I was even feeling confident enough to disagree with the directions on the gps, and go my own way. Go me.

(On a side note, thank goodness for GPS. I’d like to hug whoever invented that wonderful little piece of technology.)


Of course, that doesn’t mean I’ll be any less nervous the next time I go out, so I’m sure there will be more “lost” posts in the future.

Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , | 7 Comments

Changing Plans and Changing Tires

Saturday was a busy day.

It started early when my aunt called to tell me that her dog wasn’t well and needed to be put to sleep. I was sad to hear it, of course, but he’s very old and we’ve been expecting it for awhile. After discussing the possibility of burying him, she decided she’d have him cremated, I offered my condolences and hung up.

I apologised to Wyatt for waking him up and we lay there, just talking and thinking.¬†I wasn’t sure if I had offered “enough” and I mentioned I couldn’t tell if she was okay or not. Wyatt was quiet for a minute and then softly said, “I can dig a hole pretty fast.”

So we called her back and offered our “services” in addition to our “sorry’s”and got out of bed and bundled up to go dig in the rain. (Luckily it wasn’t raining while we were actually digging.) And after saying goodbye, we headed back inside to get warm, and get ready for the wedding we were attending that afternoon.

At that time, my dad called and needed Wyatt to make a drive to bring him some fuel so he could keep combining. It was about a 45 minute round trip, but it gave me a head start¬†getting ready, and since Wyatt doesn’t need as long anway, it worked out okay.

So we were on our way to the wedding, on track to get there about an hour early since I was reading at the ceremony and needed to get there ahead of time. We were driving on a part of the road where there was some construction, which was fine, but I started to hear a strange bumping sound coming from the front tire on my side.

I mentioned it, but we both decided it must be because of the rough road surface.

But…it wasn’t.

We had a flat tire. A very flat tire with a big hole in it.

Good grief.

So we pulled over in the first driveway we came to, and of course, there was a dog. A boxer. Not on a leash.

Just great…

But Wyatt, dressed all handsome in his new suit, got out and set to work getting the donut out of the trunk. The dog turned out to be friendly, just nosy, and wasn’t an issue, but I still had to occasionally shoo her away.

And¬†I did have the foresight to make Wyatt put down an old jacket so he wouldn’t get as dirty.

And of course, it helped that Wyatt happens to be a master at changing tires, because in ten minutes we were on our way.

Our hands were dirty, his from doing the actual work, and mine from rolling the tires to and from the trunk and helping put the old tire back underneath everything in the trunk, so we used an all-purpose cleaning wipe for car surfaces. I’m pretty sure it isn’t safe for use on skin, but we managed.

We made it to the wedding with plenty of time, and it was beautiful of course, but before we could go enjoy the reception, we needed to go and get 4 new tires.

So we headed to Wal-mart, the only place we thought would be open, and it turned out that they would need 2 hours to get us in. So I called my mom and she came to pick us up so we wouldn’t be late to the party. (Wyatt’s dad had to run him back a couple of hours later to pick the car back up before they closed.)

And by the time we had partied all night and driven the thirty minutes back to his parents’ house, we were ready for bed.

Still, as I lay in bed that night, awake by myself since Wyatt had fallen asleep in about four seconds, I had to admit that I was proud of us. We had done a lot, and hadn’t complained at all. In fact, the whole “we’re going to be late, I can’t believe we had a flat tire” experience made me respect him even more. He didn’t cuss, scream, or even silently fume as he set to work. He just got to work and got it done.

But we were pretty tired on Sunday, and by the time we got home last night, Wyatt breathed a sigh of relief and said, “Honey, let’s never leave our apartment again.”

And while he had to go to work and I am about to head out for a run and then to the store, and I have a ton of laundry and cleaning to do since we were way too tired to clean anything last night, I plan on staying in tonight, and maybe every night this week. Which I think sounds great.


Categories: Adventures | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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